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House Judiciary Committee Approves Two Articles Of Impeachment Against Trump

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerry Nadler had adjourned Thursday without a vote on the articles of impeachment. Ranking member Doug Collins (in background) likened the move to a "kangaroo court."
Image credit: J. Scott Applewhite

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Updated at 10:13 a.m. ET

The House Judiciary Committee Friday approved two articles of impeachment against President Donald Trump, making him the 4th president in American history to face impeachment by the House.

In contrast to Thursday’s contentious back and forth between the two parties, Friday’s session was devoid of rancor, or even any debate. Immediately after gaveling the session to order, Judiciary Committee chairman, Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., ordered two votes, one for each article. Both were approved on party line votes, 23-17.

House Democratic leaders are planning to hold the full House vote on articles of impeachment against President Trump next Wednesday, December 18, according to two Democratic leadership aides.

The formal debate over whether Trump should be impeached for abuse of power and for obstruction of Congress culminated in a dramatic and abrupt ending.

The committee was expected to approve the articles Thursday evening, but shortly after 11 p.m. ET, House Judiciary Chairman Jerry Nadler, D-N.Y., punted the vote to the next morning.

“It is now very late at night,” he said, adjourning the hearing. “I want the members on both sides of the aisle to think about what has happened over these last two days and to search their consciences before we cast our final votes.”

Nadler’s decision led to vocal objection from Republicans on the committee, including ranking member Doug Collins, R-Ga.

“You’ve just blown up schedules for everyone,” Collins said. “This is the kangaroo court that we’re talking about.”

Throughout the day, and for several hours on Wednesday, committee members delivered partisan talking points in support of or opposition to Trump’s impeachment. Republicans offered several amendments that were rejected.

If the full House votes to impeach the president, the Senate would then begin a trial to determine whether to remove Trump from office or, much more likely in the Republican-led chamber, acquit him.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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